Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 5, Issue 24, Tuesday June 17, 2008



Check It Out
A botanical extravaganza

If you are tired of seeing the sea of concrete, debris and muddy puddles all around you, then step into Horticulture Fair 2008 to treat your eyes to a lush green feast! With stalls from various parts of the country selling a multitude of saplings of different ferns, shrubs and cacti of diverse forms, this botanical fair started on the 24 of May and will continue till the 24 of this month at Sher-e-Bangla Nagar Road. The fair is an endeavour of the Ministry of Forestry and Environment, which aims to encourage people to plant more trees and save the environment.

If you are wondering what types of plants are available at the fair, the answer is simply: any and every type. Starting from tiny potted plants that you can place on your bedside table to add a green touch to your reverie, to larger ones that will look good in your veranda to plants that will not fit in any flower pot and need to be planted in an outdoor garden; this fair has it all.

If you are interested in heightening the décor of your abode with plants, small ferns have been beautifully arranged in little terracotta pots, which can be hung from the ceiling of your veranda or simply placed in a corner of your sitting room. Ceramic and glass vases in eye-catching colours and trendy designs have been used as pots for little plants. Tiny bamboo plants in colourful ceramic pots are also available, which will look spectacular on glass top tables in the sitting area of your house. If you are a big fan of deshi flowers like Beli, Hasna hena, Gondhoraj and the like, you might want to pick out the saplings of these plants, which are available at Tk 30 only. Not only will these enhance the beauty of your indoor garden, they will keep your heart joyful and your house fragrant all day long with their enchanting scents.

Many people have a fascination for cacti because of their unique looks and characteristics. Beautifully potted cacti of various colours and shapes are available at the Brikkho Mela within the price range of Tk 150 to 250. If you are willing to splurge a little in order to add a posh and classy touch to your indoor garden, bonsai is the right option for you. One of the stalls at the fair has a 31-year-old bonsai of a Banyan tree that bears a price tag of Tk 300,000. However, if this seems too pricey for your wallet, younger bonsai can be bought within Tk 1500 to 2000.

If you are one of the lucky ones who have a lawn or garden around your house, you might want to plant trees that will bear your favourite fruit. Brikkho Mela offers all kinds of fruit trees, starting from mango and lychees to pineapples. While trees of deshi fruits like Jamrul, Aamra, Lotkon and Koromcha are widely available, the little strawberry and rambutan plants may come as a pleasant surprise! A lime tree can also be a great addition to your backyard garden. If you are a fan of international cuisine, curry leaves and lemon grass are absolutely essential for your palate, so why not grow them at home? Saplings are available at only Tk 20. Plants like Neem, Ashyath and Tulsi, which have helped mankind with their medicinal properties over the ages, are also being sold at the fair.

Of course you may wonder whether it will be possible for you to give enough time and effort to caring for your plants, but rest assured that gardening is not that much of a hassle! Many people have the misconception that the more the plants are watered, the better it is for them. The reality is quite different. Watering plants once a day is enough for their well being. Do remember to place the flowerpots in a place that gets enough sunlight and air, but do not expose them directly to harsh sunlight for too long, since the leaves may become parched. Fertilizer tablets at Tk 2.5 each can also be bought at Brikkho Mela, along with other liquid fertilizers that will help in the proper growth and maintenance of plants.

Lastly, if you are apprehensive about where to go looking for pots to hold the bigger plants, beautiful earthen flowerpots with various designs embossed on them are also available at the fair within Tk 30.

Concepts like global warming and ozone degradation are no longer new. We all know about the bleak future that awaits us if the mindless disruption of nature goes continued. It is not acceptable to sit back and watch Mother Earth stagger towards its end. Play your own part in helping nature regain its beauty and bounty, so that you yourself may be helped in turn. We have all heard the saying 'Charity starts from home'. Well, the same can be said about saving the environment. Plant trees at home and help in the cause of saving our beautiful Earth!

By Wasia Mehnaz
Photo: Sazzad Ibne Sayed

Our Pick
Aadis adornments

Adorning oneself with almost anything and everything is something that has been integrated in humans. The history of ornaments might be considered almost parallel to the history of human civilization. In early age, the materials of all ornaments, whatever and wherever those were, were entirely from the nature.

An exhibition of ornaments made of elements out of the ordinary has taken off at Words n Pages, Gulshan-2, on Saturday, June 14. The trend of using natural elements in making ornaments was always active despite of the excellent development of technology. This trend of using natural elements, sometimes directly and sometimes in modified form, in making ornament is surely still alive in some regions of Bangladesh. Aadi has contributed to this trend by coming up with the best use of natural, old and expired elements. Designer Amman Rashid was inspired from African and primitive ornaments and after the success of his first exhibition at Deshaal in 2006, felt there is more to explore and add in to this segment. The materials for the ornaments have been got from various parts of Bangladesh and abroad. Aadi's extraordinary ornaments include expired coins, copper, rupa, tabij, gila (one type of seeds), different dry fruits, shells, snails, mud, seeds etc., beautifully crafted into exceptional jewellery for both men and women. Also in design, Aadi is inclined to something new, but of course not by being isolated from the tradition. Prices vary depending on the work and materials used. The products are exclusively sold in Arranaya. Amman Rashid has also expressed his wish to open his own studio in the near future.

The second ornament exhibition of Aadi definitely displays creativity and flair. Check out the exhibition now and get a peek of the upcoming trend in jewelleries and also the exclusive collection of Words n Pages .The exhibition lasts till the 21st of June, hit it before its too late!

By Zion Ara Hamid
Photo: Aaadi

On The Cover

The potted plants, the cactus in the coconut shell or the orchid hanging down from the logs all bring life to the ambiance you strive to create for the perfect home. Catch the botanical bonanza around to add the much needed green in your life.

Photo: Sazzad Ibne Sayed

Friendship matters

Friendship is all about understanding each other and being there for each other through thick and thin. But sometimes, small misunderstandings and arguments between friends may get blown of out proportion, if not tackled properly or resolved within a reasonable time. But, after all, friends are precious, so you should not let any argument or clash mess it up.

After you've had a big fight with your friend, give yourselves some time to cool off. This cooling off period will give both of you some time to ponder on your mistakes and calm down. When you feel you have had sufficient time for your anger to cool down, don't wait around for your friend to come and apologise. Instead, take matters into your own hands and go over to your friend to have a heart-to-heart discussion.

Remember that you should not use any harsh or accusatory tones while confronting your friend. If you feel that your friend has done something really wrong that may have hurt you, calmly explain it to him or her and clarify why you feel upset about it. Use more 'I' sentences than 'you' sentences, or else your friend might feel you are accusing him or her.

You should also keep an open mind and be ready to hear all complains that your friend may have against you. Don't become defensive when your friend blames you for something or accuses you harshly. Instead, ask your friend to pinpoint your mistakes so that you can understand where your faults lie and then rectify them.

Listening is very important. If both of you are interested only in explaining your side of the story, the listening part might be ignored. When your friend is explaining why he or she felt hurt by your behaviour, listen attentively and sincerely, because that will help you reach the root of the fight. Urge your friend to do the same when you talk.

When it comes to apologising, people always tend to wait for the significant other to go for it first. But remember that if you apologise first, it will mean that you are a caring and dedicated friend and that your intentions for ending the fight are sincere. It will also mean that you are a courageous person and that you do not let your ego come between your friendship.

Friendship is precious, and true friends are hard to come by. But friendship comes with its own package, which unfortunately includes some conflicts. But if you tackle them properly and nurture your friendship in the proper way, you will have true friends who will stay with you no matter what turns your life takes!

By Wasia Mehnaz



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